Lightweight MMA fighter, Daron Cruickshank, holds nothing back – in, or out of the ring. Probably best known for his time spent on Season 15 of The Ultimate Fighter, Daron was a part of Team Faber, and was known for his hilarious antics in the house – including a lot of nudity.
Apart from signing with The UFC, being an NCAA Division III Wrestler, and having a Black Belt in Taekwondo, I found out that Daron recently opened his own gym in Michigan (Michigan Top Team), considers himself am amature zombie hunter, and really, really, really likes yoga pants.
Want to know what his best moves are? Don’t worry… he’ll tell you.
29 Questions with Daron Cruickshank
1) Growing up – what sports did you play?
Growing up, I didn’t get into athletics until 8th grade. I started wrestling in the 8th grade, and I started swimming. I stuck with wrestling when I got to high school. To this day, I’m terrible at throwing a ball, catching a ball, or anything relating to regular sports.You could kill me in baseball! I can’t hit to save my life.
2) I know I could kill you in baseball, and I’d probably think that even if you hadn’t told me how much you suck with balls… So do you remember when you were a kid, and adults would ask “what do you want to be when you grow up?”… how old were you when you started to answer with “A professional fighter”?
I really knew that I wanted to be a professional fighter and fight in the UFC when I was a Sophomore in college, which was 2006 I guess. That’s really when I made my decision. I looked up to Matt Hughes at the time – he was a UFC Champ!
3) If you weren’t fighting for a living, what would you be doing?
I would have probably gone into the military, and played with lots of guns, I guess.
4) Are there any similarities between the two careers, that you can see?
When I fight, I’m not fighting for my life, and I’m not putting my life on the line, but they’re fighting and protecting us everyday. I’m thankful for that – they risk themselves for us. The only other similarity I can see is that I really like shooting guns… and they get to do that.
6) Your season on TUF was kind of unique… can you tell our readers a little bit about that?
Our season was the first and only live season, but all of the other seasons were 6-8 weeks long. My season was 13 weeks of being in the house, and it made it a real competition for the video guys. They had to film, edit, and put episodes together within one week, which is incredibly hard! That’s why they would probably never do a live season like ours again. I loved it; I loved being in the house, away from the stress of work, bills, women problems. All we did was train, eat, and fight. Thats the way it goes.
7) So did your season follow the characteristics of an “MTV Reality Show”? Was there any scripting, or did you see them try to work on character development?
There was no real editing. They filmed, and then they had to put us on tv. There wasn’t a lot of time, so you really get to see a fair representation of who we all are. You can’t change who people are on film, when you’ve essentially gotta show it live. Everything was one take, the whole time, and that’s how it was portrayed – nothing like the MTV reality scripted shows. When they showed our experiences, that was as real as it gets.
8) If you could put together a fantasy fight bill, which two fighters would you love to see go head-to-head?
Matchmaking… that’s a tough job. You know, I don’t actually watch it enough to know who needs to fight each other. I’m selfish, kind of, and I really just worry about about myself, and see who I want to fight.
9) If you were going to the 2014 ESPYS, and nominated as the Fighter of the Year, describe what your outfit of choice would be:
I would show up in some hillbilly boots, tight acid washed jeans, a tanktop and a scarf… actually, I’d wear exactly what I’m wearing now. Want to see?
10) How important is personal style to you?
I don’t really concentrate on if I look good, or what my style is – it just kind of comes out. It’s a bit of everything. My college wrestling coach called me a “cultured redneck”, If you can picture that. I grew up in the city, but I have a lot of redneck family. I’ve traveled the world fighting, and seeing different cultures, and I’ve mixed that into a melting pot… thats how you get me.
11) There was a time when wearing the tattoo-inspired, rhinestone-encrusted clothes from Christian Audegier and Xtreme Couture seemed to be the norm amongst fighters. Did you ever buy into the Ed Hardy-styled hype?
We actually developed a word for that on my season of TUF. We called it “Team Dragon”. Basically, everybody had a little “dragon” in him, but the only “dragon” part about me is tanning, and that I shave my body, and that’s MY dragon.
I’ll have to quote John Cofer for that… hey, you should call him.
12) Hook it up! We’d love to feature him! Is there anyone else you’d like to see featured as a Sports Babe of the Day?
Tecia Torres – she just fought the Invicta card on December 7th!
13) Ok, so the shorts that fighters weigh-in wearing, and get their fight-stance pictures taken in, leave little to the imagination. How nerve-wracking was it the first time you wore them in front of a crowd?
I’ve always worn the booty shorts, because I wrestled and was used to a singlet. Now, I feel more comfortable with less on. I think that’s a good thing. I just make sure I wear a really big cup, if you know what I mean
14) I bet you’d need to wear a big cup, regardless, right?
You’re so right.
15) As a professional fighter, you have a phenomenal physique that men look to as inspiration, and women look to as sexy…but everyone has insecurities. Has there ever been a time when you’ve woken up and secretly hated something about yourself, or felt self-conscious about something?
If you’ve met my dad, he’s got this giant belly – I call him Kung Foo Panda. With the genetics I’m working with, I have to work extra hard to look ripped, and do weigh-ins for the fight. That’s another obstacle I have to go after.
16) What do you feel the most sexy in?
I feel sexy all the time! I would obviously say when I’m getting up on stage for the weigh-in, when I’m super dehydrated, and I’m super defined. I would say I’m pretty sexy then… oh and maybe, when I’m kicking somebody in the head.
17)With that being said, I’m sure our female readers are dying to know… what do you think a woman looks the most sexy in?
I love Yoga pants. Whoever invented yoga pants… the man or the woman… they should be president of the United States. Yoga pants MAKE MY DAY.
18) So for all of our yoga pant wearing readers… what’s your relationship status?
I’m always on the market – single and ready to mingle!
19) What does your ideal date look like?
We would get a workout in, and it would be mandatory for her to wear yoga pants. She’d do some deep squats, and deadlifts. Get a protein shake – then go home for some partner massages.
20) So what’s your go-to move?
In the ring? Or out!? In the ring, I would say my feet. I throw a lot of kicks. I feel the best in the world when I knock someone out. Out of the ring? I am REAAALLYYY GOOD… orally. Never fails.
22) Is that the same kind of music you’d listen to while preparing for a fight?
When I’m working out in the gym, it all depends on how I’m feeling. Sometimes I do Toby Keith, Sometimes I do Techno. Like i said, I’m cultured… I listen to everything.
23) So now that we have your super “cultured” life soundtrack figured out, what about Hollywood? If your life were turned into a movie, which actor would you choose to portray you, on-screen?
Jason Statham. He’s the man.
24) Because you travel a lot for your fights, what is one thing you can’t leave home without?
I wish I could take my STI 2011 Everywhere – that’s a pistol, and that’s illegal.
25) Any guilty pleasures or secret hobbies you have, that you can tell us about?
I just got into 3 Gun Matches… got into it about a year ago. It’s like a shooting sport, with your rifle, shotgun, and pistol.
26) If we were to look in your travel toiletries bag, what would be the most surprising product we would find?
Surprising? Yeah, I don’t know… I always have a trimmer, tanning goggles in case I find a spot, a survival kit in case a plane goes down, or you have to fight some zombies… you gotta be ready.
27) Because you workout, fight, and travel frequently, your body is under a lot of stress. What do you do to keep your immune system in fighting shape?
I actually don’t get sick a lot, but when I do, I juice a lot! I have a juicer, so I work on getting my vitamins and minerals. The juice doesn’t taste good – you plug your nose and gulp it down – but you’ll feel strong after that.
28) That sounds like a lot of regulation and self-control! So what does your ideal “cheat day” look like?
Full cheat day? My ideal day off would be… wake up, and have breakfast out of Coney Island, which we have a ton of in Michigan. I’d go to the gun range, and fire off some ballistic therapy. Then I’d go shopping. Then tanning. Do some laundry… then maybe hit the gym.
29) You mentioned you don’t get sick a lot… I’m just curious, as a fighter, what is your healing process like? You guys take some major hits…
Yeah, I’m just so tough that I don’t need much time to heal. I got on lots and lots of dates with girls in yoga pants – that speeds up the process 😉
Chocolate or Vanilla
I’ve never had chocolate – I’m not saying I wouldn’t try it… it all depends on the situation
Beer or Wine
Definitely a beer guy – like to party and have fun. Wine kind of puts me to sleep. I’m not about sleeping. I’m about getting crazy.
Rap or Rock
Rock for sure – if I’m boxing though, old school rap puts me in the mood.
Smooth or Crunchy Peanut Butter
I like it smooth – it goes down my throat a lot easier. You don’t have to chew it…
Cat or Dog
I have only owned 1 cat, and it’s the one I rescued. I like dogs too! I love animals in general.
BlackBerry or iPhone
I’m not a conformist… Everyone goes with iPhones. I’m going to go with BlackBerry non-conformists… but I actually have a Galaxy Note 3
Twitter or Facebook
I’m starting to like Twitter so much more…
Sun or Snow
I’m definitely a sun kind of guy – get out, get some oil on, get lathered up 😉
Coffee or Tea
I love coffee. I drink like a pot a day… definitely a java kind of guy
Salty or Sweet
That’s a tough one… uhhh… man… can I have both? Chocolate covered pretzels?
RomCom or Horror
I’m not a big fan of the horror movies… I get freaky dreams at night. RomCom has lovemaking and happy feelings… yay RomCom.
Talk or Text
I love sexting.
Who has more fun, Blondes, or Brunettes?
The saying is Blondes have more fun, but it depends if they’re with me, or with another guy 😉